Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews (Kate Daniels, #1)

7/10 Stars

I know what you’re thinking, “only 7 stars?? But I thought you liked it?” Yes, very much so. I actually really liked this one. But it has a pretty big problem that took some enjoyment from the story. For me, at least. 

This is pretty much your run of the mill Urban Fantasy story. Kate Daniels is a kick ass female heroine and that in itself tends to be kind of rare in this genre. I’m starting to find more and more of them, as of late, but it’s still rare. This one takes place in Atlanta, Georgia in what I assume to be present day. There’s talk about “tech waves” and “magic waves”, so it might be a bit in the future so I was a bit confused on this front, as these 2 terms are never actually explained, but I’ll get to that later. Basically this is about Kate trying to figure out who killed her mentor/protector and comes across a few twists. She also has to learn to play nice with a few of the local paranormal species/groups around town.

This book is rare in that I actually liked the main character more than the side characters. That’s not ever really the case in just about any book I read. So this alone made me really like this story. The Beast Lord and the Bear of Atlanta came very close to being my favorites, but Kate throat punched her way to the top! My only complaint about the characters would be that I never felt that we had an enjoyable/formidable villain. The final battle with the main villain was pretty cool, but it felt a tad underwhelming. I can’t really say more, due to spoilers. But I have faith that we’ll get some better baddies in later books.

This read quite a lot like Dresden Files, but so different at the same time. This definitely starts out better than the Dresden Files– first 2 books aren’t all that great. I love books like these that read like an episode of a TV show. I love getting a conflict and conflict resolution all in a relatively short book. My brain is so crowded with big story arcs and huge casts of characters that these kinds of stories greatly appeal to me at the moment.

The thing that nearly killed my enthusiasm for this book is something that’s pretty important, and i touched upon it earlier. They frequently talk about these waves of “tech” and “magic” but never explain what it even means. I’m ok with not understanding a magic system, but when you talk about waves of tech killing off the magic that completely throws me off. It makes no sense. Here’s a line from the book to give some better context to what I mean, “Few people owned cars that ran during tech.” I never ran across an explanation and that really bugged me, since these terms are used quite often. It made certain elements extremely confusing to me.

BUT, this is still a really awesome and well-written Urban Fantasy book. I had so much fun with it and can’t wait to dive deeper into this series!

3 thoughts on “Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews (Kate Daniels, #1)

  1. Haïfa

    Fair points Michael !!
    I can’t believe I didn’t see your review earlier !!
    So to explain a few things, you need to read book 2 to better understand the alternating tech and magic waves! But basically, when magic attacks (at unpredictable and random instances), all technology dies ! This includes all human-made devices, television, numeric devices, transportation means… And magic-fueled beasts, mythological creatures etc are more potent! When the magic waves ebb, technology works again ! But not all technology; planes for example are no longer used because if magic hits and they are flying, they will simply fall. So to cope with the transportation issue, people use magic-suffused ley lines (I forgot the exact name) and magic-fueled cars (or dual engine cars, one for tech and one for magic periods)…

    As for interesting vilains… 😉 just wait for it! There were hints in Magic Bites to someone powerful and I think you might like that storyline !

    Like

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